Taxi Council of Queensland Inc.
Benjamin Wash, CEO

19 November 2014

Media Release

Illegal rideshare apps targeted in new public awareness safety campaign – Taxi Council says Queenslanders support them

Taxi Council Queensland (TCQ) has commenced a public safety campaign, including billboard and radio advertising, to warn Queenslanders they are “risking their lives” when using illegal rideshare apps.

The campaign aims to ensure the State Government continues to force these apps to meet existing safety and service regulations. TCQ is calling on the public to support an e-petition and is also seeking the backing of disability, seniors’ and women’s groups.
TCQ chief executive officer Benjamin Wash said the industry welcomed innovation and that the campaign had nothing to do with resisting competition, “a claim used by rideshare companies to disguise their unethical and unsafe business practices.”

“Cashed up companies like Uber use warm and fuzzy words but in reality they are about one thing – making money by exploiting uninsured drivers, exposing the public to risks and lying about their operations.

However he said Queenslanders are smart and can “spot a con”.

“Locals have overwhelmingly rejected these apps, with their own figures showing they have done less rides since they started than taxis across Queensland do in a few hours.”

However he said the campaign was needed because of the misinformation being spread by these companies and the need for the Government to hold firm to existing regulations.

The campaign’s slogan is blunt – “Don’t risk your life – Rideshare apps are unlawful, unsafe and uninsured”.

“These apps are illegal. The Government has told these companies not to operate but they are ignoring this,” Mr Wash explained.

“Queensland taxi drivers undergo daily criminal checks, but rideshare drivers don’t. You simply don’t know who is behind the wheel.”

“Additionally, taxis have security cameras and are GPS monitored, whereas ridesharing cars are private cars with no security measures. If the driver turns off his or her phone no one will know where you are.”

TCQ will be highlighting various community concerns including Uber’s controversial ‘surge pricing’, which charges unsuspecting customers up to ten times – or more – a normal fare in peak times.

Queenslanders can send a strong message of support to the State Government before the upcoming election. The e-petition can be found at